May 03, 2012|
Art HK is no longer just a culture buff’s affair—foodies can now get involved too. First, as the official hotel for the much-talked-about event, Mandarin Oriental will be offering a special lunch and dinner to delight all senses at the Mandarin Grill + Bar (Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 5 Connaught Rd. Central, 2825-4004, www.mandarinoriental.com/hongkong) from now until May 20 (when Art HK wraps up). Chef Uwe Opocensky has prepared a whole bunch of art-inspired dishes that are made to resemble sculptures, photos, paintings and graffiti—and there’ll also be a music component where guests have to put on a pair of headphones while waiting for a dish to be prepared before their eyes. The actual ingredients used are quite indulgent: caviar sour cream, foie gras terrine, blue lobster, truffle jus… it’s just a matter of whether you can actually recognize them when they’ve been morphed and splotched onto a “canvas” and other mediums rather than sitting dully on a plate. The lunch costs $688 per person, while dinner is $1,488. The hotel is also doing lots of other ART HK stuff, like serving “art” cocktails at M Bar, so do remember to check out its website for more details.
Miramar Group is also doing its part by by giving away free Art HK tickets to diners who spend a certain amount at its participating restaurants, including Cuisine Cuisine, Assaggio, Tsui Hang Village, Yunyan, Hide-Chan, Saboten and the restos at The Mira Hotel. $500 will get you one ticket, and $1,000 or more will get you two. Considering that the tickets are worth $250 each, I’d say that’s a pretty sweet deal.
The listilicious editor Bev and I each received a personal package from Hong Kong Personal Chef (6227-5730, email@example.com, www.hongkongpersonalchef.com) last month, and decided to try out this home-cooked, frozen-style meal one lazy lunch when we didn’t feel like leaving the office. The concept here is like this: veteran chef Tom Burney wanted to offer a healthy dining alternative to lazy people who couldn’t be bothered to cook for themselves, so he created a whole range of yummy, homemade dishes such as seafood pie, lamb tagine, roast chicken, swordfish steak and beef fillet skewers. He freezes these meals before delivering them to customers at their doors. Theoretically, you’re supposed to be able to keep the dishes in your freezer, and pop them in the microwave for five minutes whenever you feel like having them. Now, maybe the freezer at our office was super strong, or our microwave is super weak—but for whatever reason, we had to heat our lamb tagines for at least 25 minutes before they were at a warm enough temperature to ingest. The long wait was a bit of a turn-off, although we did enjoy the sauce-soaked lamb (minus the somewhat dried-up saffron rice). Anyhow, if having a home-cooked meal without cooking it yourself is up your alley, Burney’s meals are available at $110 per single portion with free delivery for four or more dishes. Delivery to Hong Kong Island on Mondays, and Discovery Bay on Tuesdays.
After bringing iron chef Masaharu Morimoto to Hong Kong a couple months ago, Landmark Mandarin Oriental (15 Queen’s Rd. Central, 2132-0066, firstname.lastname@example.org) is continuing to tango with star chefs around the world with another pop-up from May 7 to May 9, featuring Russia’s Anatoly Komm. Komm heads Varvary (Russian for “barbarian”) back in Moscow—the only restaurant in Russia to be listed on San Pellegrino’s “World’s 50 Best Restaurants” list. (Read my column next week for this year’s list!) Komm will be revolutionizing standard Russian fare for Hong Kong diners by infusing haute-cuisine elements (think caramelized foie gras with borscht). The dinner will be held in the Tian and Di function rooms of the hotel at $2,388 each, with wine-pairing at an extra $888 to $1,288 (five glasses vs. eight glasses).
‘Wich (G/F, 2 Anton St., Wan Chai, 2529-1682): a gourmet sandwich shop I think will put all other sandwiches to shame—if just by the looks alone. With a hearty selection of savory breakfast creations (delightful croissants and bagels and English muffins packed with eggs, greens, bacon and all that good stuff), customized ‘wiches and even thick and mouthwatering ice cream sandwiches, ‘Wich is definitely offering something new to our city (as in, not ramen). Can’t wait to try!
Il Caffe (Room 103, Cheung’s Building, 1-3 Wing Lok St., Central, 2545-6663): Here’s a new Italian café that’s dedicated to serving great coffee alongside pastas and sandwiches. A very European space, with small tables, wooden accents and a red-warm touch.